This week, Patrick Thompson organized and led a tour with Congressman Dan Lipinski, senior member of the Illinois delegation on the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, for executives from BNSF, UP and Norfolk Southern Railroads, and some community members so we could begin to assess the scope and nature of our community’s viaduct issues and understand institutional responsibilities for this important infrastructure. A special thank you to University Commons resident Dr. Michelle Fennessy for all her advocacy work on viaducts.
As you can see from the slide show, this important gateway between our community, with Roosevelt Square, one of the largest, most incomplete redevelopments of federal public housing in the nation, and the thriving community of Pilsen is in dire need of cosmetic and some small capital structural work as well as more effective routine maintenance to keep it clean.
Mr. Thompson committed to continued follow up on the viaduct issues and has already done a tremendous amount of research to address the problem efficiently and effectively as possible given its scope and magnitude. C4C is advocating for the first of regular meetings between City of Chicago and the railroads to understand the future schedule of both routine and capital work that must be done to make these viaducts passable – no pun intended. Check out some of the stats from excerpted pages of the viaduct fact sheet Mr. Thompson prepared for our tour.